Sounds of Pascha

Christ is Risen!

(For a list of languages for the Paschal Greeting, click here:

In the Orthodox Church, the music is part of the service rather than being just pieces of music chosen to be fitting and pleasing to the congregation. Therefore, these pieces are part of the Pascha service, and there are many different “settings” to each. These are some that are most common in the United States; a lot of them tend to be “Russian”, as it’s more western and more “pleasing to the ear” to people in the West.

Thy Resurrection…

Let God Arise…

The Angel Cried…

Christ is Risen! (Paschal Troparion)

And we sing lots and lots of different versions of “Christ is Risen” in various languages and settings.

“Galician Melody”
“Ukrainian Melody”
Serbian, Byzantine, Znamenny settings
Old Church Slavonic
Arabic, Finnish, Georgian

And, since we are dealing with different languages here, it ties in nicely with Agape Vespers and the Great Commission. (I mentioned a little bit about this in my last post.) A vespers service is generally about 40 minutes long, but the length of Agape Vespers can vary wildly, depending on how many people will read the Gospel. We attended a church in Chicago where Agape Vespers was probably at least an hour and a half long because there was something like 27 languages represented (one of the men there had formerly been a missionary to Africa and he read the Gospel in at least one language that had clicks in it). However, even in rural northern Idaho, I think we managed over a dozen. I know, I’m a language person, but there’s something incredibly moving about seeing how universal the message of the Gospel is!

Agape Vespers from a church in Oregon just a couple days ago – oddly, without the different languages, but beautiful nonetheless. Lots of “Christ is Risen” versions at the end.

Again, Pascha is a great celebration, but it isn’t a single day, and it’s about sharing Christ’s Love to the entire world.

dore canto 31 white rose

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